Monday, April 8, 2013

Unfinished Business

Friends of Faith:

Don’t you wish you could say that the laundry, the dishes, the cleaning, the cooking and/or dieting, the reading, the taking care of and praying for kids, the “to do” list was completely done—finished.
But some jobs are just never finished. There always seems to be another shirt dirtied, another meal to be fed, another closet to be cleaned, another “to do” added on the list and regardless of their ages a child (or parent) who needs prayers.

These are just a few of the unfinished jobs we encounter on a daily basis. But what are some of things we don’t recognize in our lives which are unfinished and might require our attention?
And it happened that while they were conversing and debating, Jesus himself drew near and walked with them, but their eyes were prevented from recognizing him. Lk 24: 13-15

The disciples of Jesus recounted what had taken place along the way, and how they had come to recognize him in the breaking of bread.  While they were still speaking about this, he stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be with you.” But they were startled and terrified and thought that they were seeing a ghost. Then he said to them, “Why are you troubled? And why do questions arise in your hearts? Lk 24: 35-38
Christ died, Christ rose, and Christ keeps coming back. His passion that we should be saved and that we should recognize him will never be finished.

He was spit upon, unrecognized, unrealized, and doubted. And yet he continues to work to heal us, to justify us, to forgive us, because we are “unfinished sinners.”
“And it happened that, while he was with them at table, he took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them. With that their eyes were opened and they recognized him.” Lk 24: 3-31

“Jesus came over and took the bread and gave it to them, and in like manner the fish. This was now the third time Jesus was revealed to his disciples after being raised from the dead.” Jn 21: 13-14
He was recognized in the breaking of the bread. He has given us everlasting, unending food, His body and blood. He FINISHES for us the cooking, if we will accept and eat.

But later, as the Eleven were at table, he appeared to them and rebuked them for their unbelief and hardness of heart because they had not believed those who saw him after he had been raised.
He said to them, “Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature.”
Mk 16: 14-15
He gave us THE never ending mission: to go out into the world and proclaim Him to EVERY creature. He has FINISHED the “to do” list. Are we doing the mission he commanded of us? Are we serving each other, or do we expect Him (and/or others) to do it for us?

Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained.” Jn 20: 21-23
And he gave us His divine, and never ending, mercy of forgiveness and reconciliation. The same apostles he commissioned on Holy Thursday as the first Christian priests, he commissioned to forgive our sins. He FINISHES the ultimate cleaning, the cleaning of our souls. All we have to do is ask. It is our ultimate “unfinished.”

Are we humble enough to ask (and accept) his forgiveness thru the Sacrament of Reconciliation, thru the priests who he gave the authority to forgive sins? Do we ASK or do we think we can forgive ourselves? He has offered for us the ultimate “finish.”
Our unfinished business is to EAT the food he provides; to SERVE His mission of spreading His word and serving others in His image; and to CLEAN our souls by His mercy. He gives us food. He modeled our mission. He gives us His mercy. Only thru Him is it finished. “It is finished.” Jn 19:30

Risen and all Glorious Lord, May I be humbled by Your presence in all You have created so I could rise with you. Help me to place Your mission above what I think is my “unfinished” business. Forgive me for the times I do not ask for Your forgiveness and try to do it on my own. May I be blessed with the Peace you so readily offered as you gave Your life for me. Amen.
Three times Christ’s presence was denied (we sin). Three times he offers us “Peace” (mercy and healing). Each time he was recognized by the bread he broke. Do we receive the Sacraments of the Eucharist and Reconciliation as often as possible so that we can be finished thru Him?

My business to come to full understanding and full repentance will never be finished because I am a human sinner. But with God all things are possible.
Put Christ at the top of your “to do” list. Make Him your mission. Let Him help you finish!

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